Substance Info: (and synonyms)
Olive tree

Background Info:

Family: Oleaceae.
See also: Olive

Olea europaea, the Olive tree, has been recognized as one of the most important causes of seasonal respiratory allergy in the Mediterranean area, and in other parts of the world where this tree is now grown. In these place the prevalence of atopic sensitisation to pollen from this tree can be expected to be very high.

Olive tree probably originated in Asia Minor, spread to the Mediterranean region, and was then introduced into North America (especially California and Arizona), South America (Chile), Australia and South Africa. Although in North America Olive trees are found only in the Southwest, Ash and Privet are widespread, a detail of relevance to cross-reactivity. (Kernerman 1992 ref.170 64) 2 Countries and regions have distinct varieties of Olive. In Italy, varieties of Olea europaea, which differ between the northern and southern parts of the country, can induce different IgE-mediated reactions. (Wheeler 1992 ref.4775 6)

Olive tree belongs to a family consisting of more than 30 genera and 600 species.

The Olive tree is an evergreen growing to 10m, with a broad, round crown and a thick and knotty trunk. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs). The plant is self-fertilising. Pollination is by insects but also by wind when pollen is in abundance. The pollination period of Olea varies. It occurs in the spring, but in Europe may start as early as January, depending on the region. (Liccardi 1996) 1 In southern Italy it lasts from early April to late June, and as one moves north, until July. (Wheeler 1992 ref.4775 6)

Olives grow in plantations and woods, and as scrub in dry rocky places. Olive is famous for its fruits and oil, and its by-products are used in making soap. Olive fruits are popular, especially in the Mediterranean, as a relish and flavouring for foods. The fruit is usually pickled or cured with water, brine, oil, salt or lye. Olives can also be dried in the sun and eaten without curing when they are 'fachouilles'. The seed is rich in an edible, non-drying oil; this is used in salads and cooking and, because of its distinct flavour, serves as a condiment. Olive wood is used in cabinet-making as well as in other woodworking and even jewellery-making.

The olive tree flowers in the spring, and the fruit ripens in the fall and winter.

Carob, willow, poplar, olive and cypress pollens were among important inhalant allergens causing skin test positivity in this Turkish region. (Guneser 1996 ref.3250 4)

In this olive pollen allergic family, a HLA class II DR3-DQ2 association was demonstrated (Kalogeromitros 2001 ref.4097 4)


Adverse Reactions:


[ 1 / 25 ]

A thunderstorm- related asthma epidemic has been linked with olive pollen sensitivity. (Losappio 2011 ref.26837 3)

Losappio L, Heffler E, Contento F, Cannito C, Rolla G. Thunderstorm-related asthma epidemic owing to Olea Europaea pollen sensitization. Allergy 2011 Sep 2;

[ 2 / 25 ]

A 28-year-old man presented with palatal itching and genaralized urticaria following ingestion of olive 3 years after being diagnosed with olive pollen allerggy. The patient did not have a history of food allergy or urticaria. He reported palatal itching beginning minutes after ingestion of olive fruit followed by generalized urticaria about 1 hour later. These symptoms subsided spontaneously within hours. He had experienced these symptoms several times following ingestion of olive fruit. Skin prick tests with aeroallergens including latex were positive for house dust mite and olive pollen. Prick tests and prick-to-prick tests for olive fruit were positive, as were those of specific immunoglobulin E tests to olive pollen and fruit. Prick tests to peach, pear, kiwi, melon, and nut were negative. Nasal provocation with olive pollen was positive. An open oral provocation test with olive oil did not cause symptoms. This case is unique in that the patient developed olive fruit allergy in the presence of olive pollinosis, and he did not experience allergic symptoms to fruits other than olive, thus enabling us to define a new pollen-food (olive-olive) syndrome. (Unsel 2009 ref.24613 7)

Unsel M, Ardeniz O, Mete N, Ersoy R, Sin AZ, Gulbahar O, Kokuludag A. Food allergy due to olive. J Investig Allergol Clin Immunol 2009;19(6):497-9.

[ 3 / 25 ]

Allergic reactions to fruits and vegetables are frequently observed in older children and adolescents. They can result from a primary sensitization to food allergens or from a primary sensitization to inhalant allergens such as pollens or latex. In the case of fruit allergies, the stability of the allergens involved is crucial to the sensitization pathway and in the clinical presentation of the food allergy. Two patients allergic to fruits are presented and discussed in the light of the allergens involved. Patient 1 was a 14 yr-old girl with a grass and olive pollen allergy who developed oropharyngeal symptoms typical of the oral allergy syndrome (OAS) with multiple fruits from taxonomically unrelated families, and who was sensitized to profilin. A 14 yr-old girl referred for seasonal respiratory symptoms, had since the age of 6 experienced in May and June with rhinoconjunctival symptoms, and in the last 2 yr during May she had noticed nocturnal and exercise-induced cough without associated wheezing or dyspnoea. Since the age of 10 she had experienced oropharyngeal itching, sometimes associated with throat hoarseness and lip erythema and oedema after eating melon, watermelon, kiwi, peach, apple, apricot, pear, strawberry, banana, orange, and tangerine. The symptoms appeared in < 5 min following the ingestion of these fruits, and were elicited by the fresh fruit. She had subsequently tolerated commercial apple and peach juices, and peach in syrup. As the oropharyngeal symptoms were mild, and subsided spontaneously in <15 min, the patient had presented with repeated oral reactions with the reported fruits, but had never had gastro-intestinal or respiratory complaints, nor generalized cutaneous involvement. The reactivity to peach and apple was confirmed by double-blind placebo-controlled food challenges (DBPCFC).
Patient 2 was an 8 yr-old girl, with no pollen allergies, who developed systemic reactions to peach and apple, and who was sensitized to non-specific lipid transfer proteins (LTP). At the age of 3 yr she first presented with an episode of oropharyngeal itching and facial erythema followed by facial angioedema, in the 15-30 min following the ingestion of a commercial peach juice. A similar reaction was seen again after the intake of a commercial peach juice. Her mother had previously noticed contact urticaria with peach peel when the child handled fresh peach, but she had tolerated the ingestion of peeled peach. At the age of seven she presented with oropharyngeal itching, facial erythema, and a mild urticaria that subsided spontaneously. This happened after the second bite to a fresh apple eaten with the peel, and since then she had eaten fresh apple pulp several times with good tolerance, although on one occasion she noticed mild oral itching. (Fernández-Rivas 2008 ref.22660 5)

Fernández-Rivas M, Benito C, González-Mancebo E, Díaz de Durana MDA. Allergies to fruits and vegetables. Pediatr Allergy Immunol 2008 Dec;19(8):675-681.

[ 4 / 25 ]

A Mexican study of a retrospective review of 232 patients with pollen allergy. The sensitization to Olea europaea was found in 41.5% (96). The median IgE levels was 387.2 UI/ml. Symptoms were: 95.8% with allergic rhinitis, 58.3% asthma, 66.6% chronic sinusitis, 36.4% otitis media with effusion, 29.1% allergic conjunctivitis, 16.6% atopic dermatitis, 16.6% oral allergy syndrome, mainly related to apple and strawberries; and 4.5% paranasal polyposis. Positive skin prick tests to Olea europaea were higher on April (27.2%), and lower on November (2.5%). (Morfin 2007 ref.22467 5)

Morfin Maciel BM, Castillo Morfín BM, Barragán M. Sensitization to Olea europaea in a patients group of Mexico City. [Spanish] Rev Alerg Mex 2007 Sep-Oct;54(5):156-61.

[ 5 / 25 ]

Very high levels of exposure to olive pollen in the south of Spain lead to differential allergen sensitization profiles. Quantification of minor allergens in extracts, component-resolved patient diagnosis, and IgG4 individual allergen responses were used to evaluate new strategies in the management of olive pollen allergy. IgG4 levels to major allergens increase significantly, whereas specific IgG4 to minor allergens does not seem to increase, at least during the early phases of immunotherapy. Patients exposed to extreme olive pollen levels display a different severity of allergy from those exposed to normal levels, which makes it necessary to follow a different clinical approach. The use of component-resolved diagnosis, better standardized allergen extracts, and new efficacy monitoring techniques will lead to a significant improvement in the management of olive allergy disease. (Barber 2007 ref.22004 7)

Barber D, Moreno C, Ledesma A, Serrano P, Galán A, Villalba M, Guerra F, Lombardero M, Rodríguez R. Degree of olive pollen exposure and sensitization patterns. Clinical implications. J Investig Allergol Clin Immunol 2007;17 Suppl 1:11-6.

[ 6 / 25 ]

A 6 years old girl with a grass pollen allergy sensitised to group 1 and 5 allergens, and grass profilin, who presents and OAS to multiple fresh plant foods related to the profilin sensitisation. The girl presented with a mild atopic dermatitis and since the age of 3 years experencied rhinoconjunctival symptoms in spring. At 3.5 years she presented OAS after the intake of watermelon. Since then until the last visit she presented OAS with other plant foods including apple, kiwi, apricot, plum, peach, nectarine, pear, strawberry, grape, orange, tangerine, banana, tomato, cucumber and hazelnut. She tolerated processed fruits (juices, jam) and latex contact.
Skin prick tests to inhalants were positive to grass, olive, plane tree, mugwort, and plantain pollens. SPTs with commercial extracts of fruits were negative, but positive results were observed to some of them tested fresh (prick-prick). An oral challenge with fresh plum elicited oropharyngeal pruritus and labial angioedema. SPT and serum specific IgE to Pru p 3 were negative. SPT with nPho d 2 (date palm profilin) was positive. CAP to latex was 3.03 kU/L, with negative results to the recombinant latex allergens 1, 3, 5, 6.01 and 6.02. CAP inhibition assays of pollens, plant foods and latex were performed with rBet v 2 with the following inhibitions: > 85% to rBet v 2 and rPhl p 12, 40- 100% to watermelon, orange, apple, tomato, banana, 100% to latex, > 70% to mugwort, plane tree and olive pollens, no inhibition to grass and Phleum. (Rodriguez 2006 ref.23498 2)

Rodriguez del Rio P, Rodriguez-Jimenez B, Plaza A, Reig I, Sanchez-Lopez J, Vazquez-Cortes S, Martinez-Cocera C, Fernandez-Rivas M. Early onset of profilin sensitation. EAACI Congress, Vienna-Austria. 2006 Jun; Oral Abstract 1513.

[ 7 / 25 ]

Clustered severe adverse reactions to immunotherapy with olive pollen extracts have been occasionally reported in areas where olive trees are extensively grown. Allergic patients from these areas, in addition to the major olive pollen allergen Ole e 1, frequently recognize a recently described allergen, Ole e 9. An immunoassay to measure Ole e 9 concentration was developed and found a 10-fold variation between the extreme values for the biological activity of the batches analyzed. Ole e 1 concentration showed a 25-fold variation. Variability of Ole e 9 concentration was extremely high, up to 161 times. The ratio Ole e 1/Ole e 9 varied in a range from 0.6 to 390.4. This variability may be the cause of outbreaks of adverse reactions in the course of immunotherapy treatments, which have sometimes been observed among olive-allergic patients living in areas with very high levels of airborne olive pollen. (Duffort 2006 ref.14014 2)

Duffort O, Palomares O, Lombardero M, Villalba M, Barber D, Rodriguez R, Polo F. Variability of Ole e 9 allergen in olive pollen extracts: Relevance of minor allergens in immunotherapy treatments. Int Arch Allergy Immunol 2006 Apr 3;140(2):131-138

[ 8 / 25 ]

Allergenicity can vary considerably between different varieties of the same species. For example, differences in allergenicity have been confirmed between varieties of apple (Vieths 1994 ref.844 11), olive pollen (Carnes 2002 ref.5664 7), sesame seed (Fremont 2002 ref.6669 8) and dates (Kwaasi 2000 ref.4671 7).

Lucas JS, Lewis SA, Trewin JB, Grimshaw KE, Warner JO, Hourihane JO. Comparison of the allergenicity of Actinidia deliciosa (kiwi fruit) and Actinidia chinensis (gold kiwi). Pediatr Allergy Immunol 2005 Dec;16(8):647-54.

[ 9 / 25 ]

146 patients with seasonal rhinitis and/or asthma and positive prick test to Olea europaea pollen. A total of 102 (69.9%) and 79 (54.0%) patients showed significant IgE antibody response against Ole e 2 and Ole e 10, respectively. There was a significant association between Ole e 2 and Ole e 10 reactivities with asthma. This data suggest an association of Ole e 2 and Ole e 10 with bronchial asthma. Sensitivity to Ole e 10 is associatiated with severity and persistence of asthma (Quiralte 2005 ref.11262 7)

Quiralte J, Llanes E, Barral P, Arias de Saavedra JM, Saenz de San Pedro B, Villalba M, Florido JF, Rodriguez R, Lahoz C, Cardaba B. Ole e 2 and Ole e 10: new clinical aspects and genetic restrictions in olive pollen allergy. Allergy 2005;60(3):360-5.

[ 10 / 25 ]

In this Turkish study of 127 patients with respiratory allergic disease, 19 were monosensitized to Olive pollen and 108 polysensitized. Of the patients with O.e. monosensitization, 13 had allergic rhinitis (AR) only while six had allergic asthma (AA) additionally. AR alone and accompanied by AA was present in 84 and 24 polysensitized patients respectively. Eleven patients with O.e. sensitization (57.9 %) and 86 patients with polysensitization (79.6 %) had AR symptoms throughout the year irrespective of the O.e. pollination season. Similarly, three of the O.e. monosensitized and ten of the polysensitized patients with AA had asthmatic symptoms during the O.e. pollination season and also after it. In the patient group sensitive to O.e. along with other pollen extracts, it was possible to observe symptoms outside the pollination season. However, patients with O.e. monosensitization also had symptoms to a great extent outside the season. (Kirmaz 2005 ref.12560 7)

Kirmaz C, Yuksel H, Bayrak P, Yilmaz O. Symptoms of the olive pollen allergy: do they really occur only in the pollination season? J Investig Allergol Clin Immunol 2005;15(2):140-5.

[ 11 / 25 ]

Fifty-three patients with a well-documented clinical history of seasonal AR sensitized to Dactylis glomerata and Olea europaea pollens were included in a randomized clinical trial. Immunotherapy with depigmented, glutaraldehyde-modified allergen extracts was well-tolerated and added beneficial effects to allergic rhinitis treatment in pollen allergic patients eliciting an improvement in quality of life enough to justify a change in the patient's treatment (Alvarez-Cuesta 2005 ref.15776 0)

Alvarez-Cuesta E, Aragoneses-Gilsanz E, Martin-Garcia C, Berges-Gimeno P, Gonzalez-Mancebo E, Cuesta-Herranz J. Immunotherapy with depigmented glutaraldehyde-polymerized extracts: changes in quality of life. Clin Exp Allergy. 2005;35(5):572-578.

[ 12 / 25 ]

Allergic rhinitis is a common condition which, at its most severe, can significantly impair quality of life despite optimal treatment with antihistamines and topical nasal corticosteroids. Allergen injection immunotherapy significantly reduces symptoms and medication requirements in allergic rhinitis but its use is limited by the possibility of severe systemic reactions. There has therefore been considerable interest in alternative routes for delivery of allergen immunotherapy, particularly the sublingual route. The objective was to evaluate the efficacy of sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT), compared with placebo, for reductions in symptoms and medication requirements. The Cochrane Controlled Clinical Trials Register, MEDLINE (1966-2002), EMBASE (1974-2002) and Scisearch were searched, up to September 2002, using the terms (Rhin* OR hay fever) AND (immunotherap* OR desensiti*ation) AND (sublingual). All studies identified by the searches were assessed by the reviewers to identify Randomized Controlled Trials in volving participants with symptoms of allergic rhinitis and proven allergen sensitivity, treated with SLIT or corresponding placebo. Data from identified studies was abstracted onto a standard extraction sheet and subsequently entered into RevMan 4.1. Analysis was performed by the method of standardized mean differences (SMD) using a random effects model. P-values < 0.05 were considered statistically significant. Subgroup analyses were performed according to the type of allergen administered, the age of participants and the duration of treatment. Twenty-two trials involving 979 patients, were included. There were six trials of SLIT for house dust mite allergy, five for grass pollen, five for parietaria, two for olive and one each for, ragweed, cat, tree and cupressus. Five studies enrolled exclusively children. Seventeen studies administered the allergen by sublingual drops subsequently swallowed, three by drops subsequently spat out and two by sublingual tablets. Eight studies involved treatment for less than 6 months, 10 studies for 6-12 months and four studies for greater than 12 months. All included studies were double-blind placebo-controlled trials of parallell group design. Concealment of treatment allocation was considered adequate in all studies and the use of identical placebo preparations was almost universal. There was significant heterogeneity, most likely due to widely differing scoring systems between studies, for most comparisons. Overall there was a significant reduction in both symptoms (SMD -0.42, 95% confidence interval -0.69 to -0.15; P = 0.002) and medication requirements [SMD -0.43 (-0.63, -0.23); P = 0.00003] following immunotherapy. Subgroup analyses failed to identify a disproportionate benefit of treatment according to the allergen administered. There was no significant reduction in symptoms and medication scores in those studies involving only children but total numbers of participants was too small to make this a reliable conclusion. Increasing duration of treatment does not clearly increase efficacy. The total dose of allergen administered may be important but insufficient data was available to analyse this factor (Wilson 2005 ref.15780 7)

Wilson DR, Torres Lima M, Durham SR. Sublingual immunotherapy for allergic rhinitis: systematic review and meta-analysis. Allergy. 2005;60(1):4-12.

[ 13 / 25 ]

The aim of this study was to demonstrate the importance of the ash pollen as a triggering factor of the allergic symptoms showed in early spring by a group of patients who live in the Basque Country, where ash are common trees and olive trees are not present. 48 pollen-allergic-patients were selected and classified in accordance with their predominant sensitisation in three groups: oleaceae allergic patients (O), grass allergic patients (G) and oleaceae + grass allergic patients (M). 100% of O patients, 40% of M patients and 16% of G patients suffered from early symptoms, coinciding with the flowering of ash, when grass pollen is not present yet. Conjunctival challenge tests with ash and olive pollen extracts were positive in 70% and 100% respectively in O patients, 50% and 78% in M patients and 31% and 58% in G patients. Conjunctival challenge tests in patients who suffered from early symptoms with olive extract were positive with lower concentrations of the extract. The patients with early symptoms had a higher rate of positive SPT with ash pollen (p < 0,05) and had significant higher levels of specific IgE to F. excelsior pollen (p < 0,05) than late symptomatic patients. Conjunctival challenge test to O. europaea pollen produced more symptoms to patients with early symptoms. Therfore patients living in the Basque Country and suffering from symptoms during early spring had a predominant sensitisation to ash and olive pollen compared to those patients showing only late symptoms. Ash pollen can be considered as a potentially cause of hay fever in these areas where it is present in considerable amounts. (Gastaminza 2005 ref.22042 0)

Gastaminza G, Bartolome B, Bernedo N, Uriel O, Audicana MT, Echenagusia MA, Fernandez E, Munoz D. Oleaceae pollen allergy in a place where there's no olive trees. Alergol Inmunol Clin 2005;20(4):131-138

[ 14 / 25 ]

Fifty-six seasonal allergic rhinitis patients were included in this study, all of whom lived in Jaen, Spain. Significant correlations among daily counts of Olea pollen and rhinitis symptoms were obtained. Most of our monosensitized patients needed a high Olea pollen concentration in the atmosphere (around 400 grains/m3) to suffer at least from mild allergic rhinitis symptoms.Local conditions with a wide area dedicated to olive tree cultivars result in a high concentration of this pollen in the atmosphere. Monosensitized Olea patients in our area seem to need exceptionally high levels to suffer from allergic symptoms. (Florido 1999 ref.4761 3)

Florido JF, Delgado PG, de San Pedro BS, Quiralte J, de Saavedra JM, Peralta V, Valenzuela LR. High levels of Olea europaea pollen and relation with clinical findings. Int Arch Allergy Immunol 1999;119(2):133-7

[ 15 / 25 ]

Pollen from this tree results in asthma, allergic rhinitis and allergic conjunctivitis in sensitised individuals. (Pajaron 1997 ref.2353 6) (Soriano 1999 ref.4755 5) (Cortes 1998 ref.4763 4) (Ramadan 1998 ref.4764 2) (Prados 1993ref.4768 0) (De Benedetto 1989 ref.4776 4) (Liccardi 1997 ref.4781 4) (Liccardi 1996)

Pajaron MJ, Vila L, et al. Cross-reactivity of Olea europaea with other Oleaceae species in allergic
rhinitis and bronchial asthma. Allergy 1997;52(8):829-35

[ 16 / 25 ]

Olea europaea, the olive tree, has been recognized as one of the most important causes of seasonal respiratory allergy in the Mediterranean area. Olive pollinosis is quite rare in the form of monosensitization, and in these patients, symptoms are perennial rather than seasonal. The frequency of sensitisation to Olive tree pollen varies in the Mediterranean region from 12% in Sicily to 37% in Greece. (Liccardi 1996 ref.81 621) (Blanco 1992 ref.4748 4) (Carreira 1995 ref.4749 3) (D'Amato 1994 ref.4744 3)

Liccardi G, D'Amato M, D'Amato G. Oleaceae pollinosis: a review. Int Arch Allergy Immunol 1996;111(3):210-7

[ 17 / 25 ]

Positive skin reactions to Olive pollen, among atopic patients of the Jewish population, was shown to be high where Olive trees are abundant (66%), and lower (29%) where the trees are scarce. (Geller-Bernstein 1996 ref.4766 6) (Geller-Bernstein 1994 ref.4767 2)

Geller-Bernstein C, Arad G, Keynan N, Lahoz C, Cardaba B, Waisel Y. Hypersensitivity to pollen of Olea europaea in Israel. Allergy 1996;51(5):356-9

[ 18 / 25 ]

Olive tree pollen has also been shown to result in sensitisation in Japan, where 16.3% of pollinosis patients were positive to this allergen. (Miyahara 1995 ref.4739 0)

Miyahara S. Olive pollinosis in Japan. [Japanese] Arerugi 1995;44(11):1305-10

[ 19 / 25 ]

Systemic reactions occurring during immunotherapy. (Hejjaoui 1992 ref.4825 4)

Hejjaoui A, Ferrando R, Dhivert H, Michel FB, Bousquet J. Systemic reactions occurring during immunotherapy with standardized pollen extracts. J Allergy Clin Immunol 1992;89(5):925-33

[ 20 / 25 ]

Sensitisation to Olive pollen has been reported in Israel. (Tamir 1991 ref.4746 3) (Rachmiel 1996)

Tamir R, Pick AI, Topilsky M, Kivity S. Olive pollen induces asthmatic response. Clin Exp Allergy 1991;21(3):329-32

[ 21 / 25 ]

Asthma, allergic rhinitis and allergic conjunctivitis. In Europe, olive-sensitization is frequently found in pollen-positive subjects with allergic rhinitis. (De Benedetto 1989 ref.4776 4)

De Benedetto M, Carboni M, Cuda D. Allergologic evaluation in chronic rhinitis: study of 411 cases. [Italian] Acta Otorhinolaryngol Ital 1989;9(6):545-53

[ 22 / 25 ]

Olea Europaea is the most important allergenic tree in Southern Italy and in the Naples area. Its pollination period lasts from the middle of April to the end of June. In our pollinosis patients we observed frequency of sensitization of 13.05% to Olea pollen. That means that this pollen follows Parietaria (47.80%) and Gramineae (34.70%) regarding the frequency of allergic sensitization. 24 asthmatic patients with skin positivity to only this pollen were evaluated and showed that there is no relationship between the results of SPT and Phadebas RAST; a slight relationship between SPT and Phadezym RAST, and a very good relationship between Phadebas and Phadezym RAST. Bronchial challenge with Olea extract was positive in all patients. These results may be interpreted considering the low degree of purification of Olea pollen extracts available commercially. (Melillo 1985 ref.4782 6)

Melillo G, D'Amato G, Liccardi G, D'Agostino F, Schiano M. Allergy to Olea europaea pollen: relationship between skin prick tests, RAST, ELISA and bronchial provocations tests. Allergol Immunopathol (Madr) 1985;13(3):229-34

[ 23 / 25 ]

Allergic contact dermatitis caused by olive wood jewelry. The diagnosis was confirmed by positive patch tests to scrapings from olive wood and to the quinone compound fractions isolated from an extract of olive wood by thin-layer chromatography. The chemical analysis made has shown, for the first time, that olive wood contains quinoid compounds belonging to the same group as the strong sensitizers desoxylapachol from teakwood and the dalbergiones from Brazilian and East Indian rosewood. However, compared with teakwood and rosewood, olive wood can only be considered a relatively weak sensitizer. (Hausen 1981 ref.22468 4)

Hausen BM, Rothenborg HW. Allergic contact dermatitis caused by olive wood jewelry. Arch Dermatol 1981;117:732-734.

[ 24 / 25 ]

In warmer regions of North America many newly introduced plants are cultivated widely and others are becoming aggresive naturalized weeds. Levels of allergenicity based on skin test data, numbers of patients having immediate hypersensitivity and localities where airborne pollen grains have been identified : among the most relevant are Acacia, Brassica, Citrus, Ligustrum, Olea and Schinus. (Lewis 1979 ref.12482 8)

Lewis WH, Vinay P. North American pollinosis due to insect-pollinated plants. Ann Allergy 1979 May;42(5):309-18.

[ 25 / 25 ]

The majority of studies demonstrate a higher prevalence of rhinoconjunctival symptoms than asthma. (Liccardi 1996) Patients are more likely to be polysensitised than monosensitised to Olive tree pollen. Monosensitised individuals, children and adults, have symptoms throughout the year without an apparent increase during the Olive pollination season. (Liccardi 1996) (Blanco 1992 ref.4748 4)

Editor Comment Editorial comment, common knowledge, or still to add - -

Non-Immune reactions

[ 1 ]

The aim of this study was to evaluate the relationship between sensitization type, inflammatory cell pattern, and nasal airflow resistance in a group of rhinitics with monosensitization. Seventy-seven subjects suffering from allergic rhinitis were studied. The number of subjects monosensitized to house dust mites was 23, to grasses 20, to cypress 17, to Parietaria 11, and to olive tree 6. Significant differences were observed between each type of allergen sensitization concerning both the nasal airflow resistance (p = 0.002) and the nasal cytology pattern: eosinophils (p = 0.004), degranulated eosinophils (p = 0.002), mast cells (p = 0.006) and degranulated mast cells (p = 0.008). Furthermore, goblet cells were higher in house dust mite-sensitized subjects compared with the pollen-sensitized group (p = 0.018). Nasal resistances were higher in the pollen group (p = 0.001). This study provides evidence that inflammatory cell pattern and nasal resistance depend on the type of allergen sensitization. (Gelardi 2006 ref.22009 8)

Gelardi M, Maselli Del Giudice A, Candreva T, Fiorella ML, Allen M, Klersy C, Marseglia GL, Ciprandi G. Nasal resistance and allergic inflammation depend on allergen type. Int Arch Allergy Immunol 2006;141(4):384-9.

[ 2 ]

Sixty-four patients (43%) had positive skin prick test reactions to R pseudoacacia pollen. Nasal challenge results were positive in 5 sensitized patients and negative in 4 controls and 1 sensitized patient. The allergenic profile of R pseudoacacia pollen comprises at least the panallergen profilin, a calcium-binding protein, and a 1,3-beta-glucanase. The prevalence of sensitization to rChe a 2, rChe a 3, and rNtD of Ole e 9 was 60%, 33%, and 87%, respectively, among patients sensitized to R pseudoacacia pollen. Binding of IgE to R pseudoacacia extract was completely inhibited by Robinia , Chenopodium , Olea , Cupressus , and Lolium extracts. Conclusions: The high prevalence of R pseudoacacia pollen sensitization in patients with pollinosis is likely to be due to cross-sensitization to panallergens (profilin, polcalcin, and 1,3-ß-glucanase) from other common pollens. This phenomenon may lead to a diagnosis of "allergy mirages."

Compes E, Hernandez E, Quirce S, Palomares O, Rodriguez R, Cuesta J, Sastre J, Villalba M. Hypersensitivity to black locust ( Robinia pseudoacacia ) pollen: "allergy mirages". Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2006;96(4):586-592.

Occupational reactions

[ 1 ]

Occupational allergy in a researcher due to Ole e 9, an allergenic 1,3-beta-glucanase from olive pollen. A 30-year-old man started working with olive pollen allergens in a laboratory research 10 years ago, and in particular, spent 5 years manipulating Ole e 9-allergen and derivative recombinant products. He started to suffer from nasoconjunctival pruritus, sneezing proxysms, nasal running, conjunctival redness and palatal itching while handling fractions enriched in 35-55 kDa protein components of olive pollen extract. Symptoms always appeared at the workplace and concomitantly with the manipulation of such batches of olive pollen proteins. He was asymptomatic during the olive pollination season in Madrid. SPT was postive for Olea europaea and negative for other allergens tested. A single IgE-reactive band of 45 kDa was detected in the patients serum and immunoblotting positive for purified Ole e 9-allergen. Ole e 9 is a 1,3-p-glucanase that has been described as a major allergen in areas such as Jaen (Spain) whereas patients living in Madrid (lower pollen counts) are notably less sensitized to this molecule, and they are always co-sensitized to Ole e 1. (Palomares 2008 ref.21770 7)

Palomares O, Fernández-Nieto M, Villalba M, Rodríguez R, Cuesta-Herranz J. Occupational allergy in a researcher due to Ole e 9, an allergenic 1,3-beta-glucanase from olive pollen. Allergy 2008 Jun;63(6):784-5

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